Why We Run
At World Hope we are passionate about providing safe, quality education for ALL children around the world. Join Team World Hope to provide tuition, uniforms, backpacks, and school supplies for children in our Child Sponsorship program by signing up to run and raising funds. With your support, children can stay in school and have opportunities and hope for the future. World Hope partners supports 6,000 children in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Haiti, the Philippines, and Zambia through access to quality education and programming.
Take on the race of a lifetime by choosing to run/walk a full marathon, half marathon, 10K or 5K. This race is not about being a top qualifier or setting your personal best time, it’s about joining a community of 800 or more international and local runners to support children through the resources we fundraise. During the race you will adventure through West African terrain to immerse yourself in the surrounding community and enjoy the chanting and high fives of local children.
Sierra Leone Trip
We’re headed to Sierra Leone April 28 – May 8, 2024 to not only run the Sierra Leone marathon but most importantly learn about the World Hope Child Sponsorship program. You will have opportunity to engage with local communities, learn how World Hope partners with those communities to facilitate change for sustainable livelihood, and run with some of the children in our child sponsorship program! Not to mention enjoy the beautiful country of Sierra Leone, meet new people, and try some new cuisine! We are hoping you will catch a vision for how we ALL can work together to make an impact globally so people can thrive through opportunity, dignity, and hope.
Connect with Team World Hope
I'm not a runner, can I walk the race?
You are welcome to walk the 5K or 10K distances and there will be others who will be walking as well!
What does race day look like?
In order to (try) to beat the heat, we’ll be up bright and early and running by 6:00 a.m. (final time TBD) Those running longer distances will be running for several hours and will experience the full sun the morning hours bring. We’ll meet at the local stadium with 800+ other runners/walkers to join in the excitement and walk to the starting line. The 5K is one loop through the city and back to the stadium. The 10K is two of the 5K loop. The half and full marathon will venture out of the city on the paved highway with people directing the split off for those completing the half versus the full marathon. Both full and half participants will experience the local terrain and joy of running through the smaller villages surrounding the city while looping back to finish at the stadium. Water stations are provided throughout the race, but participants will want to carry any other nutritional supplements (gel, food, electrolytes, salts, etc.) for completion of the race. Join the party at the end that ensues at the stadium as participants cross the finish line.
What does the trip itinerary include?
Here is a sample itinerary:
- Day 1-2 – Arrive by flight to Freetown, Sierra Leone and travel by land to Makeni
- Days 3-6 – Engage with and learn about World Hope programming including child sponsorship schools and children, health programming, clean water initiatives, and meet with local community members.
- Day 7 – Run!
- Day 8 – Recover at the epic Sierra Leone beaches
- Day 9 – Visit World Hope’s Enable the Children (children with disabilities) program in Freetown before departing to the airport
- Day 10 – Arrive home and celebrate the impact made through the adventure of a lifetime that provided hundreds of kids with safe, quality educational programming!
How much does it cost?
The cost per participant is approximately $1,800 per person (to be finalized soon), which includes transportation in Sierra Leone, lodging accommodations, food, travel insurance, race entry, and running jersey.
Additional expenses include:
- The flight is cost is dependent on where you are flying from (estimated $1500-$2300). World Hope will assist with flight coordination and purchase through our travel agent.
- $25 Security Fee and $80 Sierra Leone visa fee upon arrival at the Sierra Leone airport.
Do I have to fundraise to be a part of the team?
World Hope asks that all participants participate in fundraising to support Sierra Leone children in World Hope programming. The purpose of the race and the team is to bring awareness to the importance of safe, quality education and to provide resources to provide this education to children in under resourced communities. World Hope will provide the fundraising platform and guidance for fundraising. Thank you for your support!
Who is organizing the marathon?
Street Child organizes the Sierra Leone marathon and coordinates the logistics and details of the race day event. They have experienced staff and volunteers to professionally handle event coordination. World Hope is working in partnership with Street Child to have Team World Hope participate in the event.
What do I need to do to prepare for the run?
We recommend following a training plan appropriate for your race distance. There are many free training plans online or feel free to contact us for recommendations – firstname.lastname@example.org. Please take into consideration the race conditions of Sierra Leone which will be hot (85 degrees +), sunny (wear strong sun lotion), and possibly bumpy terrain. The longer distances have rolling hills and engage both paved and unpaved roads. Water stations are abundant throughout the race, but we advise bringing your own nutrition/salts for longer distances. Limited medical support is also available in case of emergency.
How are the funds we raise used?
All funds raised will be used to benefit the World Hope Child Sponsorship program in Sierra Leone which provides safe, quality education for children in under-resourced communities. World Hope not only provides access to education by covering tuition expenses, school supplies, and uniforms but also by providing support such as teacher training, child protection programming, extracurricular activities, spiritual formation opportunities, and community development.
What do I need to do to prepare for the trip?
World Hope will provide all information needed for your trip preparations. General preparations include:
- Obtaining required vaccinations (e.g. Yellow Fever). See the CDC website for recommended travel preparations to Sierra Leone.
- Having a current passport that will not expire within 6 months of the trip dates. Passports that will expire within 6 months of trip dates should be renewed prior to the trip.
- Obtaining a Sierra Leone visa (a one month visa can be obtained upon arrival to the airport in Sierra Leone). World Hope will provide guidance on appropriate visa acquisition.
- We recommend bringing precautionary medications such as anti-malarial (request from your doctor), antibiotics such as ciproflaxin (request from your doctor), or pain relievers as they may be more difficult to obtain in Sierra Leone.
- Run/walk! – We advise preparing for the distance you will run/walk prior to race day.
Where do we stay?
World Hope arranges all accommodations for your stay including a clean room with basic amenities. While there are some uncertainties regarding amenities given the reality of resource availability in Sierra Leone (electricity supply), the rooms provided have individual beds, bedding, sinks and showers with running water, and generally electricity through generator support. Specific information regarding accommodations will be provided to registered team participants. All meals are included as well.
Register to Race!
You have the power to create change by bringing awareness and raising funds to help children overcome the challenges they face to obtain a safe, quality education.
Will you join us?